(Updates casualty toll, minor edits)
Jakarta, Apr 4 (efe-epa).- At least 43 people have died and another 27 are missing after heavy floods in eastern Indonesia, the country’s disaster management agency said Sunday.
Raditya Dati, director of the Disaster Information and Communication Data Center, told a press conference that 41 of the victims died on the island of Flores, while the other two lost their lives in Bima Regency, also in the east of the archipelago.
Dati said dozens of houses in the locality of Lamanele were buried in mud, while some houses were swept away by the floodwaters, which also destroyed a bridge in Waiburak and affected at least 49 families on the island of Flores.
Rescue teams were struggling to access some of the affected areas, which can only be reached by sea, a challenge due to the strong winds and waves in the area.
In Bima, the downpour lasted nine hours and caused heavy flooding of up to two meters deep in residential areas and fields after several reservoirs overflowed.
In addition to causing two deaths and affecting more than 27,000 people, 9,245 homes have been partially flooded while 294 hectares of farmland have been damaged.
The Indonesian Meteorological Agency has warned of more heavy rains in the coming week in several areas of the archipelago, where the rainy season usually takes place between November and March. EFE-EPA